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Be Inspired! Volume 12

Be Inspired! Volume 12

Hello my lovelies! How are you doing? Are you settling in to this “new normal” way of living? How has this pandemic affected you? I’d love to hear about your experiences. I think the more we share our stories, vulnerabilities, concerns, joys and so on, the more connected we all feel… no matter where we are in the world and what our individual circumstances are, we are all going through many major collective experiences, which is unique.

I haven’t done a BE INSPIRED post in quite a long time… maybe because I haven’t been inspired?! 

I feel like I’ve been in survival mode for a few months and haven’t had much time for anything else. 

I’ve been doing a lot of reflecting, processing and other wonderful inner work… and I feel much stronger and peaceful. So I’m ready to get back into creating and sharing lovely inspiring, beautiful things with you. Be Inspired posts are where I trawl the web for cool, interesting and informative things, so that you can just click and enjoy! I hope that these shares inspire you, brighten your day or maybe teach you something new.

Image via Sakara

Kicking things off with this great article on Sakara‘s blog titled “The Five Pounds You Never Want To Lose” Intrigued? I was too… Hint: it has to do with your gut.. 

Speaking of gut health… If you experience regular bloating and gas, abdominal discomfort, IBS, skin breakouts, mood swings, a poor immune system… did you know that these can all be traced back to gut health? Are you are confused about probiotics, prebiotics, fermented foods and drinks… Should you supplement? How much is too much of a good thing? I’d love to help you out with all of these questions. Schedule a health coaching session with me and let’s heal your gut, so that you can thrive! 

Image via Food Faith Fitness

Have you noticed the new trend of everyone making their own healthier cereal? I guess it’s a lockdown thing… people having more time.. maybe it’s the comforting nostalgia of cereal? Like when was the last time you ate actual cereal?! Whatever it is, I got into it! I made my own version, which you can find on my Instagram here. It was a hit!

My next attempt is defs going to be this Cinnamon Toast Crunch recipe from the lovely Adeline of Vibrant & Pure. I’m low-key obsessed with all of her recipes and food photography! 

It’s me 🙂

Moving your body is important (just in case you didn’t know?!) … not only for the physical benefits, but also as a form of stress release and as a pillar self-love/self-care practice. I will always stand by the motto of:

“Exercise because you love your body, not because you hate it or are punishing it for what you ate.”

Have you been enjoying home workouts during lockdown? What are your faves? Do you know that I offer a variety of workouts on Zoom? Check out the schedule here. There will be some exciting changes and additions happening in the near future, so keep a lookout for those. I’d love to have you in class soon!

Regardless of what kind of home workout you’re doing, I love this article on Byrdie about overcoming distractions when exercising at home.

Image via The Forest Retreat House

Who knows when international travel for pleasure will be a common thing again? All I know is that it’s still super fun to daydream about some gorgeous places to visit. One place that totally speaks to me (although I know that there are probably many similar places here in South Africa… share them with me if you have recommendations!) … is The Forest Retreat House near Yosemite. It looks absolutely dreamy… everything has been designed to help you rest, restore and heal. Low EMFs, toxic free bedding, very natural decor and incandescent lighting… There’s an infrared sauna, outdoor bath and shower, gorgeous forrest and mountain surrounds… I could see myself hosting wonderful wellness retreats there and never wanting to leave! Ahhhhh dreamy! Check it out here.

Image via Me and B

Speaking of retreating… Staying Home is the new Going Out! Have you fallen into the trap of never really getting dressed properly? I am guilty of rotating between my workout clothes and pajamas and not much else in between. Eeeeep! Comfortable, yet stylish loungewear has never been more essential! I love local South African brand Me and B... their loungewear looks absolutely gorgeous… would love to get my hands on some! 🙂 Ahem… hint hint anyone?!

As a spoilt South African, I had been lucky enough to be able to afford a cleaning lady for our home three times a week. Due to lockdown and now a very tight budget, we have had to do our own housekeeping for the last three months. Oh my goodness, it is a workout and a half! It’s also quite a satisfying activity when you’re in the mood. The other day, I attempted to clean our windows… it wasn’t very successful – oops! Then I came across this helpful article on MindBodyGreen. I’m going to give the window cleaning another bash! 🙂

So as I said in the beginning, I’d love to hear from you… Please share the good, the bad, the ugly, the funny! Anything goes!

I hope you enjoy these articles as much as I did! 

I’ll be back with more soon, I promise! (Hold me accountable to blog more often!)

Wishing you all so much love. 

Xoxo

Oona

Black Lives Matter!

Black Lives Matter!

Not your usual Bespoke Body content… but I can’t stay silent! This is not a political issue… this is a human issue… My blog, my brand and everything I stand for is about balance, peace, happiness, health and thriving. I cannot stand by in my white privilege and not make use of whatever platforms I have to comment on this issue. Being non racist is not enough – we need to be actively and loudly ANTI-RACIST! 

Injustice against minorities is nothing new, especially here in South Africa. I was lucky enough to be too young to really experience Apartheid South Africa. In 1994 when we had our first democratic elections in the “New South Africa”, I was only 10 years old. It has been nearly three decades since then, and yet there is still such a racial divide, especially here in Cape Town. This separation makes me so sad. And I don’t know what the solution is here in South Africa… We have so many other own problems… corruption, unemployment, poverty, extreme violence and also police brutality… I often just stick my head in the sand or try to spiritually bypass all these issues, because where do I even begin? And at the moment I’m just trying to keep my own head above water as my husband deals with being unemployed and we drown in debt while trying to make ends meet as a new entrepreneur. It’s a lot…. but this is not about me.  

All these thoughts of unfairness, inequality and injustice have been in my consciousness for so long (sometimes very far back and quiet and sometimes loud and in my face) , but it has taken these recent events in America and here in SA to really shake me to the core. 

It’s time for us all to wake up!

We have to change. We have to take a stand. We have to use our voices. Everywhere in the world. We have to hold our leaders accountable. The system is broken. We cannot continue on this path. 

I keep on writing and then deleting things… I don’t want to add to the negativity and darkness in the world – turning on the news is draining enough! It’s been a long, hard few months… I have witnessed and experienced so much stress, frustration and loss… and I still feel very privileged and blessed.

I don’t even know what to say. My heart is sore. My soul is tired… but I can’t give up!

My purpose with the work I do and my passion is to be a light worker. I am here to help. I am here to inspire. I am here to uplift. 

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King 

One of my horoscopes for this week said this…

“It might feel difficult this week to hold onto your impulse to create when there’s so much destruction all around you. When the thing you want most is to build something good, something real, something that will last, it can feel hard and hopeless to witness all our structures crumbling. So this week, remind yourself of everything that hasn’t been lost. Buildings might burn, but your community is still here. Institutions might fall, but that can’t stop you from doing the real work, from working towards the world you want to live in. – Claire Comstock-Gay via The Cut

So I stay on course. I keep my mission alive. I keep showing up – for myself and for you.

I am listening. Unlearning. Learning. Growing. 

I might not always get it right, but I am trying. 

So what do we do? 

We write to our leaders. We sign petitions and donate to causes we care about. We don’t bury our heads in the sand and say “This is not my fight.” or “I’ve got my own problems.” 

It only takes a few minutes to sign a petition or forward an email. 

We can call people out when they’re being racist, sexist, homophobic or discriminating in any way. 

Our silence is consent. Don’t be afraid to rock the boat. Speak up!

Educate yourself and those around you. There are amazing movies and documentaries to watch. Wonderful books to read and podcasts to listen to. I would also add watching “See You Yesterday” and “Dear White People” (both on Netflix) to the list below.

Can you help, support or promote a more diverse group of people in your business and life in general? There are so many beautiful, talented, wise unsung gifted people of colour. Seek them out!

Lastly I think we need to really amp up the self-care and self-love. When people truly love themselves, they don’t hate or spread negativity. We also need to amp up these practices, because the current world climate is super hectic and quite draining.

If you would like to use movement and music as medicine, I created a special BLM Body Love class. It is a mix of cardio, strength and mindfulness, which is very cathartic!

To access the playlist, you will need Spotify Premium. Click here. I recommend you play the music off your phone or tablet connected to a speaker so that you can really feel it and then watch the recording off your laptop or connect it to your TV.

To access the recording of the class on Zoom – click here And enter this password: 6n.k@&Vj

I will keep this recording up until the end of June.

I hope this class allows you to feel, shift and heal some things.

There is much work to be done. The road ahead is long. Be gentle with yourself. Take rest when you need it. Don’t give up though. Keep going. Keep spreading the love and the light.

I am here for you always. Please reach out of you have suggestions, resources or you just want to chat!

I see you. I feel you. I love you.

In gratitude and love

Oona

Stay Home. Stay Fit. Stay Well.

Stay Home. Stay Fit. Stay Well.

Hey my lovelies. I hope that wherever you are in the world, you are staying safe and sane during these very trying and unpredictable times. Here in South Africa, we are entering our fourth week of official lockdown, although many people were already staying home and self-isolating for days and weeks prior to this. It feels very long now, although we haven’t had it half as bad as some other countries.

In South Africa, we are not allowed to exercise outside our homes – so no walks or runs or swims or any of that. I know many people who are very frustrated about this and feel a little lost about how to exercise or bring in movement to their day. It can be easy to just throw in the towel and become a complete couch potato during this time. Please don’t feel bad if that has been your response – I’ve had a couple of couch potato days myself! If you’re reading this though, then I assume you are interested in either staying fit and healthy or at least bringing some kind of movement into your lockdown days. In all honesty, who knows how long this situation will prevail… we have to adapt… We need to keep strong and healthy, not just for vanity’s sake, but also for our mental health, as well as keeping our immune systems strong.

Enter virtual fitness classes!

I am so grateful for technology right now. It is allowing me to continue to do what I love and to help people stay fit and well even when they can’t leave their homes. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know that I’ve been offering daily fitness classes on Zoom. Although it’s not quite the same as being in a room and feeling everyone’s energy, it’s a pretty good stand in. Anyone who has done my virtual classes can testify to their effectiveness, even though I’m not in the room with you, you’ll be encouraged and challenged and finish the class feeling better than when you started!

I offer three different types of classes: HIIT, Body Love and Tone & Stretch, so there’s something for everyone and also a nice variety if you want to train a couple of times a week or everyday. Teaching these classes everyday, has been very therapeutic for me and it’s also helping balance out the more than usual consumption of baked goods, snacking and comfort foods. (Anyone else?!)

The wonderful thing about these Zoom classes, is that you can join from anywhere in the world. Just check your timezone against South African Time. I’ve also slashed my prices for these virtual classes, to make them as accessible as possible. If you convert Rands (ZAR) into most currencies, the classes are almost for free! Hah. So you can workout without breaking your budget. YAY!

I think I might even keep going with these Zoom classes after this pandemic has passed, so hopefully I will “see” you in class soon.

If you’d like to learn more about my classes, or to book a spot in one of my classes, please click here. You can also email me directly to book: oona@bespokebody.co.za

Please keep checking the schedule, as I may change or add more classes during the weeks to come. If you’d like to request a specific class or time, please let me know! I’m here to help.

Sending you all a big virtual hug.

Love Oona

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LET’S WORK TOGETHER!

 

Call Oona! +27 83 556 3630